Winner of the PEN/Martha Albrand Award
First published in 1995, The Liars' Club is Mary Karr’s account of growing up in an East Texas oil town with an alcoholic father prone to gambling and a mother who had several psychotic episodes. Her childhood was more than slightly dysfunctional, but Karr offers the reader a plethora of darkly comic episodes that help to balance the narrative. Funny and heartbreaking, what truly sets this book apart is Karr’s exquisite and precise prose that rolls pleasingly over the reader’s ear. Recommended By Mary Jo S., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
A tenth anniversary edition of the landmark memoir, with a new introduction by the author.
When it was published in 1995, Mary Karr's The Liars' Club took the world by storm and raised the art of the memoir to an entirely new level, as well as bringing about a dramatic revival of the form. Karr's comic childhood in an east Texas oil town brings us characters as darkly hilarious as any of J. D. Salinger's a hard-drinking daddy, a sister who can talk down the sheriff at twelve, and an oft-married mother whose accumulated secrets threaten to destroy them all. Now with a new introduction that discusses her memoir's impact on her family, this unsentimental and profoundly moving account of an apocalyptic childhood is as "funny, lively, and un-put-downable" (USA Today) today as it ever was.
"Astonishing...one of the most dazzling and moving memoirs to come along in years." Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
"Overflows with sparkling wit and humor....Truth beats powerfully at the heart of this dazzling memoir." San Francisco Chronicle
"9mm humor, gothic wit, and a stunning clarity of memory within a poet's vision....Karr's unerring scrutiny of her childhood delivers a story confoundingly real." The Boston Sunday Globe
About the Author
Mary Karr's poems and essays have won Pushcart prizes and have appeared in magazines such as the New Yorker, the Atlantic, and Parnassus. She was a Bunting Fellow at Radcliffe College, and is now the Jesse Truesdale Peck Professor of English Literature at Syracuse.